Ruthless cocaine smugglers. Homicidal crack dealers. Mobbed-up heroin importers. High-risk lifestyles all around.
None of that, then, for Domingo Gonzalez, 43, of Hialeah, Fla. His drug of choice for smuggling: Lipitor, the miracle cholesterol-lowering pill. Some buzz.
But it was big enough to draw a prison term of 9 years 6 months today in federal court in Kansas City for what prosecutors called "the most extensive prescription drug counterfeiting scheme ever investigated and criminally prosecuted in the United States.”
- Co-conspirators purchased genuine Lipitor intended for distribution in South America and illegally imported it into the United States. Second, co-conspirators also bought and shipped equipment and chemicals to Costa Rica to manufacture counterfeit Lipitor, which they then illegally imported into the United States. Co-conspirators commingled the illegally imported Lipitor with the counterfeit Lipitor and sold it in the United States.
- News release from the office of U.S. Attorney Bradley J. Schlozman.